Former Google Exec Drops Senate Bid

Democrat Lexi Reese calls for campaign finance reform
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 29, 2023 4:50 PM CDT
Updated Nov 28, 2023 6:31 PM CST
California Senate Candidate Wants to 'Unlock the Economy'
Lexi Reese poses for a photo in Woodside, California, on June 11.   (Campaign for Lexi Reese via AP)
UPDATE Nov 28, 2023 6:31 PM CST

A former California tech executive is ending her longshot campaign for the US Senate seat once held by the late Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein, she announced Tuesday. Democrat Lexi Reese said she has been unable to raise the many millions of dollars needed for a first-time candidate to introduce herself to voters across the nation's most populous state. She called for term limits and campaign finance reform "so the cost to enter is not insurmountable for most people," the AP reports. The former Google and Facebook executive joined the crowded contest in June, positioning herself as "a new candidate with a fresh message." She was never able to break into the top tier of candidates, which includes Democratic Reps. Katie Porter, Adam Schiff, and Barbara Lee.

Jun 29, 2023 4:50 PM CDT

"California is amazing in so many ways," Lexi Reese said, "but our economy is a hot mess." The tech executive argued that she has the background to do something about that in announcing her candidacy Thursday for the seat being vacated by US Sen. Dianne Feinstein. Reese has never run for political office before, which she said is a good thing. "More of the same is not going to get us different outcomes and we need better outcomes," Reese said, the Los Angeles Times reports. The battles fought by experienced politicians, she added, feel like "really bad reality TV fights that do nothing to help Californian or American families."

Reese, 48, who has worked for companies including Google, Facebook and American Express, is up against well-known Democrats such as Reps. Adam Schiff, Katie Porter, and Barbara Lee. Early polls show Schiff and Porter well ahead of Lee, per Politico. Reese has lined up experienced strategists, including Celinda Lake, President Biden's 2020 pollster. The high cost of living, homelessness, and crime make California "increasingly unlivable," Reese said. Her experiences helping to build small businesses and nonprofits, as well as the difficulties her family faced after her father lost his job to automation, give her the perspective to turn things around, she said—to "unlock the economy and create pathways to more inclusive, shared prosperity." (More california stories.)

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